Over the past few years the Silo Lady Rebels have made a climb up the fast pitch softball ranks, reaching the state tournament, the semifinals and then the state title game this fall.
Two instrumental parts of that success were seniors Kensea Eppler and Daelyn Marshall and each will have the chance to continue their softball careers after signing with Murray State College on Thursday.
The addition of the successful pair is something that Lady Aggie head coach Aaron Mullens is admittedly looking forward to next year.
“They are coming from prestigious program at Silo,” Mullens said. “Coach Lawless does a great job and we have lot of the same coaching style with the work ethic we desire.
“Kensea’s capabilities are extremely high. She swings it really well and can play anywhere on the infield or catch, so she is a super utility player. Daelyn can play first or the outfield. She had some really clutch hits, especially in the state tournament. We have high expectations for both of them coming in next year.”
Eppler has been a fixture in the Lady Rebel lineup over the last several seasons while having the versatility to play multiple positions, but mostly on the left side of the infield.
As a senior this fall she hit for a .434 average with 12 doubles, a pair of home runs and 31 runs batted in helping fuel an explosive Silo offense.
“I’m very excited to get to play at the next level,” she commented. “It’s something I have looked forward to for a long time. I am looking for a chance to contribute and think we have chance to be very good and successful.
“I just want to thank God, thank my family and friends, thank my coaches and thank my teammates. Just everyone that has stood behind me.”
Marshall proved to be a key component batting in the third spot in the lineup for the Lady Rebels on their way to a state runner-up finish.
She compiled a .427 batting average that included 41 hits with 15 doubles, two home runs, 23 RBI and 22 runs scored. In addition, Marshall posted a .491 on-base percentage and .646 slugging percentage. Maybe her most impressive statistic was only three strikeouts in 113 plate appearances.
“I never knew if I would get this chance to play in college so it’s definitely a dream come true getting to go on and play at the next level.
“This is a great and exciting experience for me especially with all my friends and family here to support me.”
The current signing class, which is expected to include a couple more Lady Rebels in coming weeks, is special to head coach Mike Lawless in that they are the first to play all the way up through the program after he took the softball reins.
“To have success you have to have good players and we’ve had some good ones here,” Lawless said. “The neat deal for me is these seniors are the first here at Silo to play all four years of high school for me and what they have done to help build the foundation of our program.
“As a coach player development is one of the biggest things and it’s neat to see these two kids make that happen and move on to the next level. Hopefully it’s a stepping stone to even go two more years after that. I want the kids I send to college to continue to develop and continue to learn and I feel like Coach Mullens definitely offers them the opportunity to do that at Murray.